Urban Palimsest, Athens


Athens is a city in a constant transition and transformation throughout the last two centuries. From the move of the capital from Nafplion in 1833 until today, the city has undergone various phases, like wars, crises, flourishing, expansions, adaptations etc. After the 1930’s the building density was risen dramatically. The wide use of concrete, as well as the legislation of antiparochi (αντιπαροχή) has led to the new typology which formed more or less all the major Greek cities: the polykatoikia (πολυκατοικία). Polykatoikias took very soon over the mansions and civic houses of the new 19th century, due to an ever-growing demand for housing but also due to the simplicity and flexibility of the structure, leading to a vast densification of the city but with the cost of leaving very little free public space.


Kerameikos and Metaxourgeio (K-M) are two areas adjacent to the historic ‘triangle’ which have very similar characteristics and partially escaped the major densification of the city. A quarter which was once home to a silk factory and other production units, a place of civic mansions, later of workers building blocks and today home for locals but also immigrants, artists but also tourists. A quarter currently in a ‘regenerative decay’ that has a legacy of abandoned listed buildings, standing next to 5 to 8 storeys-high polykatoikias and empty lots.


The subject of this semester’s studio is to analyze the factors which contributed to the Kerameikos & Metaxourgeio situation today, extract the potential of housing, tourism and shared economies. Also, to investigate the existing building stock, the derelicts and the public space and evaluate which are the drivers of change for the area. In other words, to propose a sustainable urban regeneration in an area which is a social melting pot, taking into consideration the assets of the past and how to transform them into a dynamic, productive and livable quarter for the future. The studio is a design and research studio, setting the goal to work in all the major scales: from the wide city scale to the urban block and the housing unit. The students will be asked to work on both scales simultaneously in order to deepen their understanding of the impact of a single place to the city and vice versa.


The studio includes a field trip to Athens with a workshop and talks with Greek professors and students from the National Technical University of Athens.






Chair:  sustainable urbanism –

 Prof. Mark Michaeli  // Tasos Roidis // Norbert Kpling (korr.ass.)

Level: M.A. Architecture // M.Sc. Urbanistik

Participants: 12

Language: English // German


Important Dates:

WED 09.10.19     // BOOKING INFORMATION // 14.00 - 16.00  // ROOM 2249

TUE 15.10.          // KICK OFF // 14.00 - 16.00 // ROOM 2249

TUE 22. - 26.10. //  FIELD TRIP ATHENS

WED 05.02.20    //  FINAL REVIEW


Regular studio on Tue + Wed // 14.00 // room 2249


For further questions please contact Tasos Roidis: tasos.roidis@tum.de